Arapaho National Forest
Canyon Lakes Ranger District
Canyon Lakes Ranger district encompasses 650,022 acres in north central Colorado, west of Fort Collins in Larimer County. It is home to 4 wilderness areas, three national recreation trails, two historic districts and Colorado's only Wild and Scenic River the Cache la Poudre River. There are over 350 miles of trail to explore on the district and 22 developed campgrounds.
Poudre Canyon Area
Grandview is an appropriate name for this small, 8-site tent-only, walk-in campground. The campground has one restroom and one water hydrant. There is no garbage service so pack-it-in and pack-it-out. Located near the west end of Long Draw Reservoir, you look out over the reservoir and Rocky Mountain National Park. Campers enjoy fishing and hiking in this gorgeous area.
One mile from Long Draw Reservoir, at 10,000 feet, this campground is set in a dense conifer forest. All 23 sites are first-come-first-served and can accommodate small RVs and tents. The campground has two restrooms and one water hydrant at the campground entrance. There is no garbage service so pack-it-in and pack-it-out. Fishing and hiking the reservoir and nearby streams are popular activities.
This campground is situated in the mountains on the shore of Chambers Lake shaded by tall lodgepole pine. Each site has a tent pad, fire grate and picnic table. Tents must fit within the pad. All but the 7 walk-in tent sites can accommodate an RV.
All 48 campsites in Tunnel Campground are first-come-first-served. This high elevation campground sits at 9200 feet. There are 4 restrooms and one hand pump for water. Located near the confluence of the West Branch Laramie River and the Laramie River, it is situated in a mature lodgepole pine forest. From Highway 14, take the Laramie River Road and travel 7 miles on dirt road to the campground.
Recent pine beetle activity has taken a toll on the lodgepole pine trees in the area. But campers still enjoy this 26-site, first-come-first-served, campground. Browns Park Campground has 2 restrooms, no water and no garbage service; pack-it-in and pack-it-out. Travel 17 miles on the dirt Laramie River Road to County Road 80-C. Fishing, hiking, hunting, 4-wheeling and wildlife viewing are popular activities.
Aspen Glen has 8 campsites set in an aspen and mixed conifer forest and open meadow. The campground has 1 restroom and 1 hand pump for water. Hiking, fishing, mountain biking, scenic driving, four-wheel driving and wildlife viewing are recreational opportunities available nearby.
Big South Campground has 4 sites next to Highway 14 and the Cache la Poudre River near the Big South Trailhead. Suited to small RVs and tent camping, campers come here to fish and hike in the surrounding Comanche Peak Wilderness. The campground has 1 restroom, no water and no garbage service; pack-it-in and pack-it out.
Located on Sleeping Elephant Mountain, this campground has 15 campsites in an open ponderosa pine forest. You can see the sleeping elephant from the campground. This is an older campground and cannot accommodate larger RVs. The campground has 1 restroom and 1 hand pump for water. Although the river is nearby, it is mostly on private property and so is not accessible to fishing.
8 campsites, including 3 walk-in sites, are adjacent to the Cache la Poudre River. The campground has 1 restroom and 1 hand pump for water. Campsites are situated on an open flat with sage brush and a few conifers. A bighorn sheep viewing station on the entrance road to the campground. Campers enjoy fishing, hiking and wildlife viewing.
Jack's Gulch is one of the larger campgrounds in the Ranger District providing a variety of camping choices. It has 71 sites including 1 group site to accommodate up to 60 people. There are 27 electric sites, 5 equestrian sites and 10 walk-in tent sites. The group site and 2 equestrian sites are reservable; all others are first-come-first-served. The main campground has 4 restrooms and 4 water hydrants. Popular activities in this area include hiking, stream fishing, mountain biking, scenic driving and some four-wheel driving. Travel 6 miles on the dirt Pingree Park Road to access the campground.
Tom Bennett is an older facility and provides a more remote camping experience near Pingree Park. Access the campground via 16 miles on the dirt Pingree Park Road. These 12 campsites are situated adjacent to the South Fork Cache la Poudre River in a lodgepole pine forest setting. It cannot accommodate larger RVs. The campground has 1 restroom, no water and no garbage service; pack-it-in and pack-it-out.
Kelly Flats is set in an open conifer forest on Hwy 14 and the Cache la Poudre River. Campers come here to enjoy stream fishing and the ambiance of the river flowing through the campground. 29 sites, including 10 walk-in sites, are available on a first-come-first-served basis. The campground has 4 restrooms and 4 water hydrants.
Mountain Park has 32 electric sites and 22 non-electric sites. All but 3 electric sites are reservable. All non-electric sites are first-come-first-served. Each site is large enough for an RV and has a tent pad. Tents must fit within the pad. The campground has drinking water, vault toilets, pay showers and a playground. There is a group site which can accommodate up to 75 people. Campers enjoy fishing and white water rafting on the adjacent Cache La Poudre River.
Dutch George is a lower-elevation campground located adjacent to Colorado Highway 14 and the Cache la Poudre River. It is well-suited for larger RVs due to the highway access, paved interior road, and longer parking spurs. The campground is primarily an open flat area but there are cottonwood and ponderosa pine trees within the riparian zone of the river, providing shade to some of the campsites. There are 20 sites, 2 restrooms and 2 water hydrants. All sites are first-come-first-served.
Narrows - Upper (RV and tents) and Lower (tents only)
The Narrows Campground is just 32 miles northwest of Fort Collins on the Cache la Poudre River. The area varies from dense forest to open meadow and is surrounded by steep mountains. The lower section is for tent camping only and consists of 8 walk-in sites. There is a common parking area with a restroom and water hydrant and foot-paths lead to the individual campsites. The upper section consists of 7 campsites and 7 picnic sites. There is no charge to use the day use area. All sites are reservable from Memorial Day through Labor Day and first-come-first-served outside that range.
9 sites, including 4 walk-in tent sites, varies in terrain from dense forest to open meadow and is surrounded by steep mountains. The Cache La Poudre River runs alongside the campground. Each site contains a tent pad, fire grate, and picnic table. Stove Prairie has 1 restroom. No drinking water is available. 1 campsite is first-come-first-served. The other 8 sites are reservable from Memorial Day weekend through Labor Day but first-come-first-served outside that date range. Popular activities include fishing, white water rafting and hiking.
A portion of this campground is open year-round. 17 campsites are spread out in 2 loops that range from heavily forested to open meadow. Upper Ansel Watrous has 10 sites including 3 walk-in tent sites. Lower Ansel Watrous has 7 sites. Each loop has a restroom and piped water. All campsites are reservable from Memorial Day weekend through Labor Day and first-come-first-served outside that range.
Red Feather Lakes Area
North Fork Poudre
The North Fork Poudre Campground is located along the Deadman Road west of Red Feather Lakes. It is located near the banks of the North Fork Cache la Poudre River in a dense lodgepole pine forest. This is an older facility with short parking spurs that will not accommodate larger RVs. 9 sites are available for first-come-first-served campers. No potable water.
West Lake Campground has 36 sites, including 6 walk-in tent sites, with electrical hookups in all but the tent sites. This is a popular area for fishing and hiking close to the campground.
Dowdy Lake Campground has 70 sites including 10 walk-in tent sites in a ponderosa pine setting. This campground is extremely popular for fishing, hiking, and mountain biking. There is also a day use area and boat ramp. The day use area and part of the campground are open year-round.
This area is comprised of unique rock formations and views of the mountains. This campground was heavily impacted by the mountain pine beetle; consequently most campsites have very limited shade. The lake is available for fishing via a wheelchair accessible boardwalk from the campground. Electrical hookups are available in some sites.
Crow Valley Campground can accommodate RVs and tents. 6 of the 10 family sites are reservable up to 180 days in advance and at least 4 days in advance of arrival. The group Picnic site can be reserved up to 1 year in advance and can accommodate up to 200 people. 4 group campsites are varying sizes.